Do you ever shop on daily deal sites? You know, something like Living Social.
I hardly ever shop these types of sites, but NYC (and a few other cities in the US) hasÂ this website called Gilt City which features daily deals on restaurants, spas, activities, etc. I donât usually buy things from there, but last weekend they had one I just couldnât pass up.
The deal was for brunch at this amazing vegan restaurant here on the Upper West Side. Candle Cafe West is 100% vegan and has loads of gluten-free options. Their food is absolutely amazing and itâs one of my favorite places to eat out.
The deal was a brunch for two and included one smoothie, entree and dessert for each person. (<â see? i said it was too good to pass up!) I immediately bought it, made a reservation and sent Matt the info. (side note: heâs not the biggest fan of this place, but I knew heâd indulge me since dessert was included) We each ordered a smoothie, an entree and a dessert. It was probably one of the most filling brunches Iâve ever had, especially since everything was safe for me to eat and it was so delicious!
The most memorable part of the meal was my salad.
I ordered the chopped salad which came with all of my favorite veggies: avocado, tomato, cucumber, olives, lettuce and even chickpeas. It was crunchy, refreshing and satisfying.
I really loved the combination of fresh romaine, with the juicy tomatoes, briny olives and hearty chickpeas. Everything paired so well together; it was almost like a blend between a caesar and Greek salad.
The only thing I didnât adore was the dressing. It was a creamy oregano-garlic dressing which sounded amazing, but the flavor fell a little flat. It didnât have enough zing.
As soon as I finished my plate, I looked up at Matt and told him I needed to create a quinoa version for you all, with a more jazzy dressing of course. It was just one of those dishes that I knew with a few tweaks could be truly outstanding.
So the very next day, I whipped up my own version of their salad and came up with this: a chopped quinoa salad with a creamy tahini chive dressing.
You guyssss. Itâs SO good! Iâve been eating it non-stop.
I love that itâs hearty enough to stand on its own, but it still feels light. Itâs packed with protein, healthy fats and fresh greens, so itâs pretty much the ultimate meal.
One thing I will say is that it doesnât really keep for more than a day (especially because of the avocado), so if you want to make a big batch of it, Iâd just do all the prep ahead of time and toss it together when youâre ready to enjoy it.
The dressing tho? Thatâs fine to keep for a while. Iâve been putting it on everything. (but then again, you already know how obsessed I am with tahini, so thereâs that.)
Happy munching friends!
PS: if you make this recipe (or any others!) make sure to snap a pic and share it on Instagram using hashtag #SIMPLYQUINOA â I want to see your creations!
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Chopped Quinoa Salad with Chive-Tahini Dressing
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
- 2 cups chopped romaine
- 1 cup diced tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped cucumbers
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1/2 cup quinoa
- 1/2 cup chopped black olives
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas
for the dressing
3 tablespoons tahini
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon wheat-free tamari
3 tablespoons finely chopped chives
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Fresh pepper (if desired)
- In a large mixing bowl, combine romaine, tomatoes, cucumbers, avocado, quinoa, olives and chickpeas. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Taste and adjust seasoning with fresh pepper if desired.
- Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine.
- Serve salad immediately (or chill for no more than 20 minutes). Garnish with additional chives and chili flakes if desired.
Copyright Â© 2010-2014 by Simply Quinoa, All Rights Reserved. This recipe, and the photos associated with this recipe, are the property of Simply Quinoa. Do not duplicate this recipe without written consent by its owner.
More yummy quinoa recipes to try:
Summertime Asian Quinoa Coleslaw (Simply Quinoa)
Vegetarian Kale Salad with Toasted Quinoa (Simply Quinoa)
Ultimate Summer Quinoa Salad (Yummy Mummy Kitchen)
Southwestern Quinoa + Grilled Corn Salad (Foodiecrush)
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